7 Tips on How to Research your Competition

August 10, 2017 Topics :

Competitor analysis will give valuable insights about how VAR is performing against industry rivals. It will help you to identify opportunities and new industry trends that can help to improve your business revenue. Monitoring your competitors will help you to analyze your strengths and what aspect of your company needs improvement. On the basis of your research, you can then develop a solid strategy to achieve tangible business outcomes and stay ahead of the competition.

Here are some ways to know what your competitors are doing

  • Visit your Competitor VARs Website

By simply accessing your competitor VARs website, you can get a wealth of information related to their products, services and pricing structure. Identify how their offerings are different from yours. Study their pricing and discount structure and compare it with your own pricing strategy. Also examine each and every page of the site thoroughly to get a 360 degree view of your competitor’s use of keywords. Compare your site with your competitor’s and identify what keywords can be inserted into your website to improve rankings.

  • Use Online Tools to Watch your Competition

In today’s times, spying on your competitors is essential and in fact a well-known practice. There are various online tools that can help you to analyze what your competitors are doing, so that you take well-informed decisions to outsmart the competition.

The tools assist you to collect information about your competitors. For instance, SEMRush will help you to find out your competitor’s keywords in organic search and in AdWords. On the other hand, Hootsuite is a social media tool to view Twitter data of competitors. If you are using Google Alerts, you will get emails regarding latest product news, press releases, and updates about the company you are interested in.

  • Take Interviews

Interview

    • New Customers

    This is a clear way of extracting information about your rival VAR companies. You can inquire with your new set of customer about the reason behind leaving your service. Ask them why they preferred your services over rivals. Such one-on-one interviews will help you to evaluate your strength, which you can leverage it to your advantage.

    • Suppliers

    Are you using the same suppliers as that of your competitors? If yes, then asking a few set of questions to the suppliers can help you to know what new products rivals are coming with in the near future and how they compare with your own products.

    • Former Employees

If possible try and contact ex-employees of your rival companies. Reach out to former sales and customer support employees who can provide valuable information about your competitors’ marketing strategies and ideas.

  • Sign-up for Free Newsletter

Newsletter

Newsletters provide an easy way to keep a track of your competitors. So once you subscribe to their e-newsletters, you will regularly get all the latest information about your competitors directly in your inbox. You can also get valuable insights about their marketing strategy through these newsletters. This will enable you improvise your own promotional activities so as to get better response from your customers.

  • Monitor your Competitors’ Social Media Accounts

Most of your competitors will have social media presence. Keeping an eye on your competitors’ accounts across Facebook, Tumblr, Reddit, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter etc, can also provide depth insights about their products and services. You can analyze what promotional activities your competitors are offering on social media to improve business. Know how they are creating online buzz through social media. You can also analyze customer feedback on their different social media channels and accordingly decide what marketing efforts are working. Moreover, you can get vital information about current industry trends that are being discussed over social media.

  • Attend your Industry Conference

Attend your Industry Conference
Attend a conference in your field and come face-to-face with your competitors. Such events expose you to variety of ideas of marketing tactics that might work for your business. Conferences that are related to your niche or expertise are an excellent opportunity to know the best business practices that successful entrepreneurs have implemented. These events allow you to interact with new vendors and suppliers that provide competitive pricing and help you to grow your business.

  • Analyze Industry Reports

You can also browse through industry reports that are updated annually for understanding your competitors and market size. These reports are comprehensive and provide a range of information about your competitors including their customers, goods and services they offer. You can also gain insights of what strategies your competitors are employing in order to gain competitive advantage. You can get information about your competitors from U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) data. SEC is an independent agency of the United States federal government that have quarterly, periodic as well as annual reports of public companies.